Friday, October 22, 2010

Grandma's Meatloaf, a Comfort Food

For years this is one of the only things I knew how to really cook that was not from a box or package. I remembered watching my Grandma make it so many times as a child and it was so simple that it stuck with me.  I know its good because Ted has told me more than once that its better than his moms meatloaf.  The biggest compliment, in my book, that a man can give you about your cooking is that its better than his moms.  Especially since Ted's mom is an AWESOME cook!  Ted has told me that he actually hated meatloaf growing up and this is one of his favorite meals that I make now.  This kiddos love it too.  Everyone practically licks their plates clean.  I hope your family will enjoy it as much as ours!

What You Will Need-
1-2 lbs (depending upon your family size/appetite) of ground beef
2 slices of bread-heels work best
1 egg
3-4 potatoes peeled and cut into 4-6 slices (depending upon size of potato)
3-4 carrots peeled and cut into medallions
Salt, Pepper, Onion Powder and Garlic Powder to taste
1 jar Spaghetti Sauce-any variety you like

Step 1: Prepare the Bread Crumbs-
In a food processor tear up bread slices into chunks.  I like to use the heels because those usually do not get eaten for anything else.  GREAT TIP: I put them in a ziplock baggie and keep them in the freezer to pull out when I need to make bread crumbs.
Bread Crumbs
Add seasoning to taste.  Once again, like most of my recipes I am sure you have noticed, I do not measure this.  Experiment with it and see what your family likes.  You can even try other seasonings if you like.
To guesstimate the best I can I imagine I put like maybe 1/8 of a teasp salt and pepper and about 1 teasp onion and garlic powder.
Pulse food processor until everything is mixed and are coarse crumbs.

Mixing the Meatloaf
Step: 2: The Meatloaf Itself-
In a large bowl add meat, bread crumbs and eggs and mix until well combined.
I use my hands for this.  God gave you hands, don't be afraid to get them dirty, they do wash.  I wash my hands first (obviously, we would hope I do!) and take my rings off then I get in there and mash away.  Its a great stress reliever for me.
Once everything is good and mixed for meat into a "loaf" and place into a deep casserole dish that preferably has a lid to go with it.

Step 3: Add Veggies, Sauce and Cook-
Add Sauce
Recycled Foil is also a great "Green" buy

Layer potatoes and carrots around the meat.  I like to buy Organic Carrots because they are a cheap way to get some organic veggies to your family.  I would LOVE to be able to buy everything Organic but our budget does not allow for this.  However, Organic Carrots are barely more than the regular carrots.  A regular bag of carrots is a around $1 at our local stores, the Organic are like $1.28 or something like that.  Its just pennies more.  Frozen Organic Broccoli is also a great buy, especially from Costco.
Dump about 1/2 of the jar of sauce on top of the meat and veggies.
Cover everything with foil and bake in the oven at 350 for 2.5-3 hrs.
Dish up and enjoy!

Organic Carrots-A great buy for your family

Meatloaf all ready to enjoy
SIDES: Home made rolls and a garden salad are GREAT side dishes with this meal.

*Sometimes I only bake carrots with the meatloaf and make mashed potatoes to go with it instead of the baked potatoes.

This is a very special recipe to me, one that's close to my heart so please let me know if you enjoy it as much as we do.  Its my comfort food of choice.


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